One candidate for FIFA president has no clue how soccer works

1/29/14 in Soccer   |   w_g_walters   |   223 respect

Take a look at what 55-year-old Jerome Champagne wants to do as FIFA President:

1) Orange cards that send players to a "sin-bin," or penalty box like pro hockey;
2) Allowing only the captain to address the referee as in rugby;
3) Allowing referees to move free kicks 10 yards in case of dissent;
4) Abolishing the "triple punishment" that results in a penalty kick, red card and automatic one-game suspension for a player who denies a clear goal-scoring opportunity;
5) Greater use of instant replay video;
6) Releasing the salary information for FIFA officials;
7) Live televised debates for FIFA presidential candidates.

No, this recipe for disaster is not a joke. It's actually part of his platform.

Let's go over it:

1. Referees do not agree. They are suggesting indoor's blue card, but indoor's card system is almost identical to hockey penalty system. The card system has been in place since the 1970 World Cup because of growing violence in the sport, which became even bigger when Pele said he would not play if something weren't done. (In the first game, Mexico received a single yellow while USSR got four). 

Ejection without substitution for an entire game is a key to discipline in this game, and changing the caution system will take away from that. Besides, a lot of indoor teams are associated with hockey teams, anyway.

2. So, if the ref and the team captain are on opposite sides of the field, the captain has to waste time and possibly abandon play to talk to the ref? No thanks. It works in rugby because the entire team goes up and down the field together.

3. This was tried in England, at the turn of the century, and failed.

4. The "triple-punishment" works. The coach and teammates will get on him for his behavior because the coach will have to find another plan for the next game, and his absence in the current game is a weakness.

5. While it's worked in football, basketball, and rugby, doing it in the lowest scoring game in the world would only hurt the game by making players and fans anxious, which is never a good idea.

6. Debatable.

7. Sorry, this is for the presidency of FIFA, not the United States.

With this platform, Champagne should be laughed out of running. A serious platform would point out the issue with deliberate handballs to stop a goal, most evidenced by the Ireland-France playoff and Uruguay-Ghana quarterfinal, both involving the 2010 World Cup, in which both winning teams had a player stop what should have been the winning goal by deliberate handball. The goal should count, which is one rugby rule I think should be instituted.

As for everything else, all I have left to say is . . .

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